Smoking is not a direct cause of mesothelioma. Mesothelioma is primarily caused by exposure to asbestos fibers. However, smoking can significantly increase the risk of developing mesothelioma in individuals who have been exposed to asbestos.
Asbestos exposure is the primary risk factor for developing mesothelioma. When asbestos fibers are inhaled or ingested, they can become lodged in the lining of the lungs, abdomen, or heart, leading to inflammation, scarring, and eventually causing mesothelioma, a rare and aggressive cancer.
While smoking itself doesn’t cause mesothelioma, it can compound the risk when combined with asbestos exposure. Smoking weakens the lungs and damages lung tissue, making them more susceptible to the effects of asbestos fibers. Additionally, when a person both smokes and is exposed to asbestos, the risk of developing lung cancer increases significantly compared to those who don’t smoke.
It’s crucial for individuals who have been exposed to asbestos, whether through their occupation or other sources, to refrain from smoking and undergo regular medical check-ups to monitor their health, as the combination of smoking and asbestos exposure substantially raises the risk of developing mesothelioma and other related health issues.